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Row brews over plans to build 4,000 new homes in Solihull

A REVOLT over Solihull Council’s plans to build around 4000 new homes in the borough continues to spread.

A REVOLT over Solihull Council's plans to build around 4,000 new homes in the borough continues to spread.

Residents in Balsall Common have joined the growing number of communities who have vowed to fight proposals for new housing.

Action-group Barrage (Balsall Against Rural Ruin And Greenbelt Erosion) oppose the development of greenbelt between Kelsey Lane, Kenilworth Road and Windmill Lane.

Up to 500 homes could be built on the wedge of countryside - creating an estate three times the size of the existing Riddings Hill.

This latest call-to-arms follows angry responses from residents groups in the likes of Knowle, Marston Green, Shirley and Kingshurst.

Speaking to the Solihull News, a Barrage spokesman said the community feared that releasing the land would open the floodgates.

"Whilst the current proposals relate to two specific parcels of land, permission to develop these will affect the status of the surrounding land," he said.

"This must be regarded as the thin end of the wedge as the surrounding land will then become indefensible Greenbelt land which, almost inevitably, will be released for development.

"Increasingly both communities to the north and south of the A45 feel theyre in the firing line."

Councillor David Jamieson (Lab, Kingshurst & Fordbridge) said people in his ward were 'incandescent' about what they see as over-development.

The villagers in the Meriden Gap, meanwhile, argue that their infrastructure, schools and medical facilities are not equipped to deal with a further increase in population.

At this month's Full Council meeting, borough councillors reiterated the urgent need for more homes - particularly affordable dwellings.

"We have to be realistic about this," Coun Ian Courts, cabinet member for economic development and regeneration, told fellow members.

"We can't just carry on as we are."



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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